Commerce, Ca (PRWEB) December 19, 2013
Just last week Uruguay’s Senate approved, by a 16-13 vote, a government sponsored bill that would regulate the cultivation, distribution and consumption of marijuana within the country. Uruguay became the first country to legalize marijuana so liberally and many other on looking countries, including the United States, are interested in the effects this will have on local businesses, crime rates and in generating tax revenue.
According to the BBC article come April 2014, cannabis consumers in Uruguay over the age of 18 will be able to buy a maximum of 1.4 ounces each month from government licensed pharmacies. These pharmacies will not require a prescription for the purchase of marijuana; however those who wish to buy must be registered on a government database which monitors monthly purchases by individuals. Individuals will also be able to grow up to six marijuana plants in their homes a year. This recent legislation was adopted as a way to help combat drug trafficking that has been plaguing South America for years. The regulation’s chief aim is to take the market out of the hands of drug traffickers and allow Uruguayans the freedom to consume marijuana without the fear of government retaliation.
Local marijuana dispensary suppliers here in California are hopeful that the events in Uruguay will impact the United States’ war on drugs in a positive way. A spokesperson for one local supplier, SunPack Pharmacy Supply, said “We hope Congress will look at the effects this law will bring upon the nation of Uruguay and use it as a model on how beneficial a law like this in the United States will be to small businesses and to the overall bigger picture in alleviating the national debt”.
SunPack, is currently headquartered in Commerce, CA and their primary business is providing pharmacy supplies such as vials and glass jars. Many of their current clients are medical marijuana dispensaries all across the United States, and legislation like the one passed in Uruguay would help increase their business as it would open a new influx of clientele. In California, marijuana purchase is limited to people with certain medical conditions and that have a valid prescription from a doctor. “If we could not just limit the sale [of marijuana] to those with specific medical conditions but to those who like to consume marijuana recreationally, we would open up a huge market that would not only be a big blow to drug traffickers but would provide another source of tax revenue for our State”.
In 2010, California was close to doing just that. Proposition 19, called the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act, would have legalized marijuana and allowed the state government to tax and regulate the sale of marijuana; however, that ballot initiative failed by a narrow margin in the November elections. “Maybe those voters who voted against passing the legislation will look at the positive effects the newly enacted Uruguay law will have and will change their perspective on legalizing marijuana,” the company spokesperson added.
In the coming future all eyes will be on Uruguay’s social experiment. Whatever the impact the law may have, it will likely supply ammunition for both sides of the legalization debate here in the United States.
For more on Uruguay's historic marijuana stance, visit the BBC:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-25328656